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Maximizing Soviet Interests in Xinjiang: The USSR’s Penetration in Xinjiang from the Mid-1930s to the Early 1940s
Zhang, Liao

2012, Master of Arts, Ohio State University, Slavic and East European Studies.

This thesis seeks to examine the question of how the USSR established and maintained Soviet hegemony in Xinjiang, also known as Chinese Turkestan, and made best the local governor’s pro-Soviet administration to maximize its national interests roughly from the mid-1930s to the early 1940s. In a broader sense, by studying the Soviet-Xinjiang relations during that period of time, this thesis attempts to illustrate how it is effective to transfer the Stalinist model to the areas outside the Soviet Union. It also seeks the answers as to how a centralized great power and a second country’s peripheral regions form their relationship and interact with each other.


In order to demonstrate that Moscow integrated Xinjiang into the USSR’s economic and defense systems, and took advantages of the localized Stalinism in Xinjiang to regulate its subjects and better its socialist transformation in Central Asia, this thesis is divided into five chapters to discuss related issues. Chapter one brings up the specific topic and frames the argument of this thesis. Following that, the second chapter briefly surveys Xinjiang’s geographic and historical background, and discusses both the legacies of Chinese rule in Xinjiang and unavoidable Russian influences there. Chapter three examines how the pro-Soviet governor Sheng in 1930s became obsessed with Stalinism, and how he borrowed Stalinist administrative models to legitimate his rule in Xinjiang. Moreover, the third chapter also discusses the Sino-Soviet relations in 1930s, which made the Soviet Union’s penetration in Xinjiang possible. Chapter four, the main chapter of this thesis, analyzes the Soviet-Xinjiang relations from the mid-1930s to the early 1940s in a detailed way. It spells out how the USSR benefited from strengthening its presence in Xinjiang and keeping Xinjiang within its sphere of influences. The last chapter generalizes a conclusion and goes to the legacies of Soviet influences in Xinjiang during Sheng’s tenure.

David Hoffmann, PhD (Advisor)
Morgan Liu, PhD (Committee Member)
Scott Levi, PhD (Committee Member)
62 p.

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Zhang, L. (2012). Maximizing Soviet Interests in Xinjiang: The USSR’s Penetration in Xinjiang from the Mid-1930s to the Early 1940s. (Electronic Thesis or Dissertation). Retrieved from https://etd.ohiolink.edu/

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Zhang, Liao. "Maximizing Soviet Interests in Xinjiang: The USSR’s Penetration in Xinjiang from the Mid-1930s to the Early 1940s." Electronic Thesis or Dissertation. Ohio State University, 2012. OhioLINK Electronic Theses and Dissertations Center. 22 Oct 2017.

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Zhang, Liao "Maximizing Soviet Interests in Xinjiang: The USSR’s Penetration in Xinjiang from the Mid-1930s to the Early 1940s." Electronic Thesis or Dissertation. Ohio State University, 2012. https://etd.ohiolink.edu/

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